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Unscreened or Screened Topsoil?

Published Tuesday 19th February 2019

If you’re looking to purchase topsoil, it’s important you know the difference between screened and unscreened. Here are the differences:

 

Unscreened topsoil

Unscreened topsoil comes without having been broken down into fine particles and it hasn’t had any large items removed from it. It’s often sourced from excavations and it’s likely to contain things like rocks and stones, sticks and weeds. 

 

Unscreened topsoil uses

Unscreened topsoil makes a great base for creating a garden or for construction projects as it’s ideal for things like filling holes or levelling garden slopes. Whilst it can be used for raised beds, if you’re wanting to grow any plants you will need a top layer of screened topsoil. This is due to unscreened soil being rough and containing many large bits of detritus, meaning plants will struggle to grow sufficient roots. Also, because of the nature of the soil, it can trap water. This would contribute to root rot. 

 

Screened topsoil

Unscreened topsoil is able to be turned into screened topsoil. The process gets rid of the larger lumps found in unscreened topsoil. The screening process has to be thorough because if this soil type is used for growing plants, you don’t want weeds in there!

 

Screened topsoil uses

If you will be using screened topsoil for growing plants and flowers or laying a lawn, then it should be great. It should give you excellent drainage and allow nutrients to enhance your plants’ growth. Also, it will save you from doing extra work as the weeds are already removed!

 

Whether you should choose screened or unscreened topsoil will depend on how you are going to be using it. If you’re simply going to be using it for general landscaping or filling in gaps, then unscreened should be fine. If you will be growing plants, including flowers and vegetables, then you will need screened soil to guarantee proper growth.